September 2010


Who cares about forests?
I’ve just signed a petition to European Environment Ministers urging them to lead on climate. 

On October 4th, climate talks continue in China.Since the Copenhagen summit, global climate negotiations have been on the brink of collapse, and a breakthrough is urgently needed. Now, several European nations are leading a push for an accounting trick that would let rich countries cut down as many trees as they wanted — without having to report the increased climate damage.

Let’s push back with a citizens’ roar of strong support for forests — click below to take action: 

http://www.avaaz.org/en/trees_not_tricks/98.php?CLICKTF

Read more about this important issue below.

—–

Dear friends,

Next week, a small group of European countries are planning to carve a loophole into the shaky foundation of a global climate treaty that could doom the talks. A global outcry now could halt their plan and re-energize work on a deal.

Since the Copenhagen summit, global climate negotiations have been on the brink of collapse, and a breakthrough is urgently needed. Now, Sweden, Finland and Austria are leading a push for an accounting trick that would let rich countries cut down as many trees as they wanted — without having to report the increased climate damage.

Other European countries can stop the creation of this loophole, leave the international race to the bottom and take on the climate leadership role that the world so desperately needs. But without public pressure, there’s no incentive for them to lead. Let’s come together now, as global citizens, and sign on to a ringing message to all European Environment Ministers urging them to be bold on climate and make forests count. Only one week remains — click below to sign petition, then forward this email around to your friends and family:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/trees_not_tricks/98.php?CLICKTF

The negotiation over the forest loophole comes at a pivotal time. Political momentum on climate change has slowed — while the climate crisis itself has grown worse. 2010 has been the hottest year ever on record, with a rising tide of climate-related disasters from Pakistan to Russia.

Forests are the lungs of our planet, sustaining people, animals and plants worldwide. They’re also a potential life-saver in the fight against climate change. But they’re threatened: deforestation already contributes to 20% of all global greenhouse gas emissions. We can’t let a handful of countries undermine efforts to protect them, exploiting forests to avoid taking on real action to protect our common future.

If we can stiffen Europe’s backbone and tackle this issue, we can inject new hope into the climate negotiations that will shape the world we all live on. Let’s show European politicians that global citizens want them to lead the way — sign on and forward this message:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/trees_not_tricks/98.php?CLICKTF

In the wake of the recession, the European Union has suffered a crisis of confidence on climate — too paralyzed by fear of failure to resume its historic role in pressing the world forward. We know that Europe can lead the way on forest protection, because it’s done so before: earlier this year European citizens and leaders played a pivotal role in curbing the devastating trade in illegal timber.

In the sustainable future that we all seek, forests will be accorded the same respect by governments that they have always received from the world’s people. As we build a movement capable of overcoming climate change, let’s use this moment to protect the trees that have protected humankind for millennia.

With hope,

Ben, Iain, Alex, Graziela, Ben M, Mia, David and the rest of the Avaaz team.

Sources: Cheating Countries Threaten Efforts to Save Forests: http://adoptanegotiator.org/2010/06/05/cheating-countries-threaten-efforts-to-save-forests/

Closing loopholes and bridging gaps: http://blogs.worldwatch.org/revolt/closing-loopholes-and-bridging-gaps-after-bonn

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Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives, a startlingly poignant and inspiring real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life.

In Search of Simplicity is a unique and awe-inspiring way to re-visit and even answer some of the gnawing questions we all intrinsically have about the meaning of life and our true, individual purpose on the planet. I love this book.”

Barbara Cronin, Circles of Light. For the complete review visit: http://www.circlesoflight.com/blog/in-search-of-simplicity/

In Search of Simplicity is one of those rare literary jewels with the ability to completely and simultaneously ingratiate itself into the mind, heart and soul of the reader.”

Heather Slocumb, Apex Reviews

Peace is not just the absence of violence but the manifestation of human compassion.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama

 An eye for an eye and the whole world would be blind.

Kahlil Gibran

 

The following words recently arrived in my inbox and are surely worth reflecting on. They come from another heart-based initiative bringing humanity that much closer to maturity and peace.

 As we plan to grow the Charter for Compassion, we are reflecting on the many signs of peace and compassion among us today. These voices grow in confidence as we respond to the harmful rhetoric around an Islamic community center in New York and an unprecedented natural disaster in Pakistan. Opportunities for dialogue, compassionate action, empathy, altruism, and forgiveness are in abundance and we invite you all to rise to the challenge for a more compassionate world.

Visit the site and add your name to the charter:

http://charterforcompassion.org/   

Charter Updates

This fall, we begin our focus on three key initiative areas for the Charter—youth engagement, compassionate cities, and congregational life and interfaith dialogue. Resource development, partner engagement, and website enhancements are also part of this work. We will share more details with you over the following weeks and look forward to working with you to spread the Charter for Compassion.

In November, the Charter for Compassion celebrates its first anniversary. To honor this special day, we are planning an exciting event in conjunction with the United Nations in New York City. More information to follow! As you continue to hold events that celebrate the Charter, November would be a wonderful time to renew your commitment to compassion and plan to celebrate the anniversary. As an example, Amsterdam continues to inspire us with their planning and commitments. Mozes & Aaronkerk recently offered an update:

On November 11, Charter supporters will celebrate compassion with lectures, workshops, music and a Hindu fire ritual. On November 20, TEDxYouth @Amsterdam will participate in TEDxYouthDay in support of the Charter culminating with a presentation of the Dutch translation of the Children’s Charter for Compassion.

The Charter Community

Karen Armstrong 

In light of the Qu’ran burning threats and the Mosque debate, Karen was inspired to respond in the midst of a busy lecture season. The Huffington Post ran her piece as the lead article on the religion section on Saturday, September 11.  

Flooding in Pakistan 

TED Curator Chris Anderson and his wife Jacqueline Novogratz of the Acumen Fund spent five days on the ground in Pakistan to see for themselves the devastation caused by the floods that have displaced 20 million individuals and destroyed or damaged over 6 million homes. Committed to sharing this story and asking for action, Chris shared this blog entry and videos and Jacqueline journaled extensively. There are countless stories of compassion, hardship and healing sprinkled throughout the wealth of important facts about this disaster the world must attend to.

Monterrey, Mexico 

A major world conference addressing values and culture and human rights, Encuentro Mundial – Valores y Cultura de la Legalidad, will occur in Monterry, Mexico later this month. Children’s activities will be aimed towards the practice of compassion and peace, the Department of Education of Nuevo León will be participating with a campaign where the Charter for Compassion’s message will be shared in dozens of schools.  Over 25,000 students will write messages for peace and practice acts of compassion. These efforts will be documented and published on a special issue in a local paper on Saturday, October 2nd.

 

News from the Charter Facebook Page

We are struck by the use of the Charter Facebook page to share deep insights, offer inspiring updates, and examples of compassion from around the globe. Here are a few from the past few weeks:

Last week, on the anniversary of 9/11, many of you reposted this line from the Charter for Compassion, along with a pledge to always live compassionately: ‘”The principle of compassion lies at the heart of all religious, ethical and spiritual traditions, calling us always to treat all others as we wish to be treated ourselves…” We remember and honor the compassion shown to those directly and indirectly impacted by the events of 9/11. Let us bring compassionate to our daily lives again, especially now, especially when it is difficult. In response, Sarah wrote, “This September 11th, we can best honor those who died by turning our backs on hatred, and generating compassion (loving kindness). Is it easy? No. Is it better than the alternative? DEFINITELY!!”

In response to the proposed Qu’ran burning, many of you responded with thoughtful comments and links. Michael responded to Pastor Jones, “Dear Pastor Terry Jones, thank you for helping me see more clearly than ever before, the wisdom and dire necessity for the Charter for Compassion. Maybe that was your mission all along? … I will spread the Charter’s message, and I will stand up for the rights of my Muslim neighbors.”

Poems, quotes, stories, and commitments regularly surface online. Thank you for sharing your wisdom, please continue to do so.

Melissa: “If we all were to just move in love, walk, breathe and speak in love, what a beautiful moment we could share.

Lobsang: “Despair is never a solution, it is the ultimate failure. In Tibetan we say, ‘if the rope breaks nine times, we must splice it together a tenth time.’ Even if ultimately we do fail, at least we will have no feelings of regret. And when we combine this insight with a clear appreciation of our potential to benefit others, we can begin to restore our hope and confidence. – The Dalai Lama”

Oliver: “Go into the world and do well. But more importantly go into the world and do good.”

Copyright © 2010 Charter for Compassion / A Project of the TED Prize / Made possible by The Fetzer Institute

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Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives, a startlingly poignant and inspiring real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life.

In Search of Simplicity is a unique and awe-inspiring way to re-visit and even answer some of the gnawing questions we all intrinsically have about the meaning of life and our true, individual purpose on the planet. I love this book.”

Barbara Cronin, Circles of Light. For the complete review visit: http://www.circlesoflight.com/blog/in-search-of-simplicity/

In Search of Simplicity is one of those rare literary jewels with the ability to completely and simultaneously ingratiate itself into the mind, heart and soul of the reader.”

Heather Slocumb, Apex Reviews

Shangri La Gardens with Neighbouring Forest

Prepare to be inspired. John goes in depth on Voices from the North with Sun and Light, a couple who have been together for 41 years and who are the co-founders of Gentle World, the non-profit vegan community based in Hawaii and New Zealand. They speak with reverence for their early days and the reasons they became vegans. They speak with sincerity for a life dedicated not only to seeking the Truth, but to living it. They haven’t wanted to protest the things they haven’t wanted; they’ve spent their lives living the changes they want to see in the world. They describe how they’ve overcome chronic health problems through their choices, choices founded on the premise that they don’t want to support violence in the world; and their excellent health is only a by-product of their vegan lifestyle.

If you’re not already a vegan, you’ll want to be after listening to this passionate interview. Sun and Light explain how they came to New Zealand and found their incredible rural property called Shangri La. If there is one question that has predicated their choices in life it is, “Is it better?” As I said before, prepare to be inspired:

CLICK BELOW TO:

Subscribe to In Search of Simplicity by Email

Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives, a startlingly poignant and inspiring real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life.

In Search of Simplicity is a unique and awe-inspiring way to re-visit and even answer some of the gnawing questions we all intrinsically have about the meaning of life and our true, individual purpose on the planet. I love this book.”

Barbara Cronin, Circles of Light. For the complete review visit: http://www.circlesoflight.com/blog/in-search-of-simplicity/

In Search of Simplicity is one of those rare literary jewels with the ability to completely and simultaneously ingratiate itself into the mind, heart and soul of the reader.”

Heather Slocumb, Apex Reviews

Economics is extremely useful as a form of employment for economists.

 John Kenneth Galbraith

Dr. Kennedy Graham was a recent guest on Voices from the North The complete interview can be listened to below:

Ken teaches international politics and international law at the School of Law, Canterbury and Victoria University, and has previously worked for NGOs, the UN and as a diplomat. He was involved in negotiating the South Pacific Nuclear Free Zone, defending the policy as a NZ diplomat before the UN in Geneva and New York and was also Director of a UN programme in the Middle East. Having returned to New Zealand he now aspires to contribute his experience and perspectives to helping the country tackle the global problems we face.

Ken is now a Green Party MP and he was touring the Far North in order to share his perspectives on sustainable economic principles. He also enunciated some of the details of his Private Members’ Bill to augment the economic indicators (like inflation, GNP and GDP) that economists and politicians presently use when forming or justifying policy.

In economics, the majority is always wrong.

John Kenneth Galbraith

One of the greatest pieces of economic wisdom is to know what you do not know.

John Kenneth Galbraith

 

Some of the ground covered in our talk included:

The ‘growth’ philosophy

The greatest myth of the age – that we will be better off if everything grows. The impact on the environment is becoming unsustainable. 

Population growth

We know world population now is nearing 7 billion and the prediction is that we will reach 9 billion by mid century.  Some claim that a sustainable world population is much lower than this. How can we cope with this rise in population and still maintain fair standards of living for all people?

The growing gap between rich and poor

Success is often measured in the amount of ‘stuff’ we have.   How can we create a more ‘holistic’ way of life that brings in social, environmental and spiritual aspects to balance the economic side?

Again the complete interview can be found here:

Find out more about Dr. Kennedy Graham here:

http://www.greens.org.nz/people/kennedygraham

CLICK BELOW TO:

Subscribe to In Search of Simplicity by Email

Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives, a startlingly poignant and inspiring real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life.

In Search of Simplicity is a unique and awe-inspiring way to re-visit and even answer some of the gnawing questions we all intrinsically have about the meaning of life and our true, individual purpose on the planet. I love this book.”

Barbara Cronin, Circles of Light. For the complete review visit: http://www.circlesoflight.com/blog/in-search-of-simplicity/

In Search of Simplicity is one of those rare literary jewels with the ability to completely and simultaneously ingratiate itself into the mind, heart and soul of the reader.”

Heather Slocumb, Apex Reviews

The ear of the leader must ring with the voices of the people.

 Woodrow Wilson

The most basic of all human needs is the need to understand and be understood. The best way to understand people is to listen to them.

 Ralph Nichols

Sir John Goulter is running for mayor of the Far North District Council. He certainly has the credentials to lead an organization of this sort. Her Majesty The Queen approved John’s re-designation as a Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit (KNZM) in August 2009. This tribute follows on from the many John has received during a long, productive and successful career as a business and community leader. For 15 years John was Managing Director for Auckland International Airport Limited as it moved purposefully forward into the private sector. He has been chairman of such diverse organizations as the New Zealand Lotteries Commission and United Carriers Group.

In December 1999, the NZ Business Herald announced John as its Business Leader of the Year. Within the Deloitte/Management Top 200 Awards John Goulter was selected New Zealand Executive of the Year in 2002. The National Business Review named John as the NBR New Zealander of the year in 2003 and in September of that year he was inducted as a laureate into the New Zealand Business Hall of Fame. He was also inducted into the Manukau City Business Hall of Fame in July 2003. For more on the superlative executive exploits of Sir John Goulter visit here.

The Beach in Paihia Where John Goulter Lives

I interviewed John Goulter  September 15, 2010 on Voices from the North. John’s slogan for the campaign is ‘I Hear You.’ During the course of our conversation he tells an inspiring story that I feel exemplifies the need for leaders to listen. We all know this doesn’t always happen. Click below to hear John’s four minute story of a time when he was a high-priced consultant who dared to listen and to acknowledge the wisdom of those doing the job.

John’s views on a variety of subjects pertinent to the voters of the Far North have been excerted from our interview. Feel free listen. Most are only about two minutes long.

On leadership:

On Getting Help from Wellington:

On the support of Maori:

On decison making:

On Unitary Authority:

On parks and reserves:

On the movement of Council offices:

I urge you to read more about John Goulter on his website at http://johngoulter.wordpress.com/

Our complete interview can be heard here:

 

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Radio host, librarian, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives and Beyond the Search, books to lift the spirit and touch the heart. See http://www.JohnHainesBooks.com 

 In Search of Simplicity is now available as an eBook here.

In Search of Simplicity is a unique and awe-inspiring way to re-visit and even answer some of the gnawing questions we all intrinsically have about the meaning of life and our true, individual purpose on the planet. I love this book.”

Barbara Cronin, Circles of Light. For the complete review visit: http://www.circlesoflight.com/blog/in-search-of-simplicity/

In Search of Simplicity is one of those rare literary jewels with the ability to completely and simultaneously ingratiate itself into the mind, heart and soul of the reader.”

Heather Slocumb, Apex Reviews

“We must make every effort for the promotion of peace and inner values.

I fully support [Peace One Day].”

 His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Nobel Peace Laureate 

Each of us, with every breath we take, is able to contribute to peace. Last night, while recording some things for the radio, my friend Gay alerted me to the following:

In 1999, preoccupied with questions about the fundamental nature of humanity and the most pressing issues of our time, filmmaker Jeremy Gilley launched Peace One Day and set out to find a starting point for peace. He had a mission: to document his efforts to establish the first ever annual day of global ceasefire and non-violence with a fixed calendar date.

Remarkably, two years on, he achieved his primary objective when the 192 member states of the United Nations unanimously adopted 21 September as an annual day of global ceasefire and non-violence on the UN International Day of Peace. We call that day Peace Day.

The UN International Day of Peace on 21 September every year is not only about creating peace between nations, it’s about non-violence in our homes, communities and schools. Therefore Peace Day is relevant to every human being on the planet.

Now the next major objective is to introduce 3 billion people to Peace Day by 2012. To do it, we need the help of all people regardless of age, race, nationality, religion or gender; people who are willing to stand up for peace. 

Jeremy Gilley on Right

“My experience of conflict is that those who are involved in it long for even a day of peace. To have a day of cessation of violence, that to me is an idea whose time has come.”

 Mary Robinson, then UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, from a filmed meeting with Jeremy Gilley.

The above information was found at: http://www.peaceoneday.org/en/welcome

I urge you to visit the site, get involved and, especially, to think about what you will do today to create peace and harmony in your life and in the world.

Peace, John

P.S. Below is the recording we’re playing on the radio here in New Zealand’s Far North today. I recorded it last night:

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Subscribe to In Search of Simplicity by Email

Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives, a startlingly poignant and inspiring real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life.

In Search of Simplicity is a unique and awe-inspiring way to re-visit and even answer some of the gnawing questions we all intrinsically have about the meaning of life and our true, individual purpose on the planet. I love this book.”

Barbara Cronin, Circles of Light. For the complete review visit: http://www.circlesoflight.com/blog/in-search-of-simplicity/

In Search of Simplicity is one of those rare literary jewels with the ability to completely and simultaneously ingratiate itself into the mind, heart and soul of the reader.”

Heather Slocumb, Apex Reviews

All I do is help people help themselves.

Linda Hindley

My recent guest on Voices From the North, Linda Hindley, is a visitor from her native England. University educated with majors in science, economics and sociology, in the course of her long, productive and eclectic working life she’s been a teacher, organic farmer, consultant, administrator in various social service fields, all leading to her present occupation of healing—or, as she would say, a channeller of energy.

Her healing/energy work today finds her variously engaged in hospitals, a drop-in centre and in private practice. Much of what she does is given freely.

A common theme throughout the interview was Linda’s conviction that the universe provides her with exactly what she needs, at precisely the time it is needed. She gives the example of setting up a refuge for the homeless during a particularly brutal winter in 1995 and 1996 when people living on the streets were dying from exposure to the cold. Much of what was required for the refuge was entirely dependent on the generosity of the local community—in terms of time, energy and money.

Waiora Gardens - Where Linda Stayed in New Zealand

All went well until the day they were due to open, January 1st. Appliances had been donated, plumbed and wired in. Unfortunately, at the eleventh hour, a washing machine was leaking and a cooker was not wired in. The next two knocks on the door of the final day were made by a plumber and an electrician—seemingly delivered by providence—and the necessary repairs were completed, just on time.

That night, as Linda and the homeless guests settled into their warm, dry, temporary home, one of the volunteer helpers remarked, “You know. We have everything we need.”

Linda replied, “Yes, but it would be nice to have a television.” The phone rang just after they spoke. It was someone with a television they no longer needed, supporting Linda’s belief that all that is needed is provided and even, sometimes, what is wanted as well.

Linda had a near death experience at the age of 21 and nothing that has happened to her since can shake her knowing that she has guardian angels and that all the events of her life have a purpose in bringing her precisely to the place she’s at today.

A few years back her partner of ten years, a lifelong smoker, was diagnosed with terminal throat cancer and given a year to live After radiation treatment, he and Linda made their way to what was then called the Bristol Cancer Help Centre (it has since been renamed the Penny Brohn Centre). Linda says if there’s a heaven on earth, this is it. They were swept up and cocooned in an atmosphere of love and embarked on a journey of healing embracing nutrition and a cornucopia of therapies complementary to the allopathic treatment prescribed by his doctor(s). They were gently guided to take control of the healing process, to reduce stress and deal with all aspects of physical, emotional, mental and spiritual healing. He used the Essiac herbal mixture a An ancient Canadian Ojibway Indian herbal formula passed on to nurse Rene Caisse—Essiac is her name spelled backwards—by a native Canadian healer in the 1920s) and other natural means and completely eliminated the cancer.

Unfortunately, he’d suffered horrific earaches as a consequence of the radiation treatment. Being terminal, he was prescribed morphine for the pain and, contrary to what the doctors said could happen, he became addicted to the drug. Ultimately, he underwent a painful period of detoxification to over come the physical addiction.

All was well until he was diagnosed with lung cancer. It was determined to be incurable and he was told to get his affairs in order. The doctors were unable to help.

They turned once again to the Penny Brohn Centre and immediately embarked on a basket of complementary treatments of his choice. The eight tumours were reduced to three in a matter of months and he was gaining weight and making plans for the future. Until he died tragically in a car accident. Life can seem so unfair at times.

When asked at the end of the interview what one could do if diagnosed with cancer Linda’s response was so stirring I’ve cut a little clip out of the interview and uploaded it here. I’ve summarized (in my words) the gist of her reply here:

Take power back to yourself. No one knows you better than you. Your body is your best friend, often showing you through illness, serious or otherwise, the changes you need to make to attain a sense of wholeness of self. Don’t reject the help mainstream doctors can provide but embrace the tool bag full of natural therapies which complement traditional medical treatment. Sometimes cancer’s natural outcome will lead to death. But many times, Linda emphasizes, it is a wake up call. Listen to what the disease has to tell you, listen to your body, trust in a higher power (call it what you like), make the necessary dietary and lifestyle changes (especially areas that reduce stress) and healing is often possible.

We played two pieces of Irish music—Moonchild by Celtus in the middle of the hour and finished with part of Clannad’s Theme from Harry’s Game.

Click below for the complete therapeutic interview:

Anyone wishing to contact Linda may leave a response to this blog and I’ll pass it on to her.

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Subscribe to In Search of Simplicity by Email

Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives, a startlingly poignant and inspiring real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life.

In Search of Simplicity is a unique and awe-inspiring way to re-visit and even answer some of the gnawing questions we all intrinsically have about the meaning of life and our true, individual purpose on the planet. I love this book.”

Barbara Cronin, Circles of Light. For the complete review visit: http://www.circlesoflight.com/blog/in-search-of-simplicity/

In Search of Simplicity is one of those rare literary jewels with the ability to completely and simultaneously ingratiate itself into the mind, heart and soul of the reader.”

Heather Slocumb, Apex Reviews

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